Tag Archives: Cannabinoid Overview

An Overview of the Main Cannabinoids

All molecules in nature are heavily affected by their surroundings and are in a continuous state of chemical equilibrium. Due to this equilibrium a large variety of chemicals occur under different conditions and environmental factors. There are many cannabinoids, we will walk you through the basics.

Cannabigerolic Acid (CBGA) is the first cannabinoid formed from a biosynthetic reaction, and is the precursor to all other natural phytocannabinoids.

CBGA is produced by the trichomes and converted to THCA,CBDA and CBCA using enzymes.

Cannabinoids like THCA can decarboxylate to THC with heat because the bond between the THC and acid cannot hold. 

Cannabinoids can react with molecules to form new cannabinoids, such as CBGM (cannabigerol monomethyl ether).

Cannabinoids may fold and interact with themselves to form other cannabinoids. 

Presently, there are 146 natural cannabinoids catalogued. It is true that they all exist under certain conditions with certain isolating methods. 

Though each cannabinoid has the potential for breakthroughs in research, most of them have neither been isolated nor characterized. It is often confusing and needs to be simplified. 

THC (tetrahydrocannabinol)

The most well known and studied cannabinoid. Until recently even studying this compound was highly discouraged and supervised. Discovered by Raphael Mechoulam and Yechiel Gaoni in Israel 1964.

THCA (tetrahydrocannabinolic acid)

THCA will play a pivotal role in cannabis medicine. THCA is found in variable quantities in fresh, undried cannabis, but is progressively decarboxylated to THC with drying. THCA is produced from CBGA by THCA synthase.

CBDA (cannabidiolic acid)

CBDA degrades to CBD over time. CBDA is the predecessor to CBD.  Produced from CBGA by CBDA synthase

CBD (cannabidiol)

It is the second most prevalent of the active ingredients of cannabis. CBD exhibits no effects indicative of any abuse or dependence potential. Obtained by a non-enzymatic decarboxylation of CBDA, which is produced by an enzyme from CBGA 

CBN (cannabinol)

CBN is a non-intoxicating, mildly psychoactive, compound that occurs when THC decarboxylated, this cannabinoid created when THC ages. 

CBG (cannabigerol)

Cannabigerol is the non-acidic form of CBGA, the parent molecule from which other cannabinoids are synthesized. Cannabigerol is a minor constituent of cannabis.

CBC (cannabichromene)

Appears in smaller amountsTHC and CBD. It is not scheduled by the convention on psychotropic substances. It is produced from CBCA under thermodynamic conditions.

CBL (cannabicyclol)

CBL differ mainly in the absence of double bond in the second molecule. recent studies have shown promising conclusions, especially regarding the anti-inflammatory potential and anti-tumor effect of CBL. 

CBV (cannabivarin)

Cannabivarin (CBV), also known as cannabivarol, is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid found in minor amounts in the hemp plant.It has no double bond isomers or stereoisomers.

THCV (tetrahydrocannabivarin)

THCV is a cannabinoid receptor type 1 antagonist and cannabinoid receptor type 2 partial agonist.  Δ8-THCV has also been shown to be a CB1 antagonist.

THCV is a new potential treatment against obesity-associated glucose intolerance

CBDV (cannabidivarin)

CBDV is structurally similar to CBD. Like CBD. CBDV is not intoxicating when isolated.

because of a demonstrated neurochemical pathway for previously-observed anti-epileptic and anti-convulsive action. Phase 2 trial for adult epilepsy are being conducted. CBDV is the non-acidic form of CBDVA,

CBCV (cannabichromevarin)

CBCV typically exists in cannabis strains at low levels. CBCV is related to CBC. CBCV has a similar but shorter chemical structure than CBC. It is a propyl cannabinoid, which means it has a propyl chain in its molecular structure rather than a pentyl chain that branches off once again to include a propyl chain. Formed from when heat is applied to CBDVA. 

CBGV (cannabigerovarin)

These agents are able to interfere with the development of cancerous cells, stopping them and preventing them from growing. Using specific dosage patterns, they can destroy cancer cells on their own. Significantly, these compounds are inexpensive to produce could result in much more cost effective anti-cancer drugs

CBGM (cannabigerol monomethyl ether)

Beyond the molecular structure, no clear difference has been identified between the CBGM and other cannabinoids in the CBG group. 

CBE (cannabielsoin)

Cannabielsoin (CBE) was identified as a novel metabolite of CBD.Promotes prolonged pentobarbital-induced sleep.

CBT (cannabicitran)

CBT is a trace cannabinoid..Discovered by Obata and Ishikawa in1966, and determined in 1976. There are nine known types of CBT. CBT is structurally similar to THC. Its psychoactive activities are unknown, but may mitigate the psychoactive components of THC. 

Below is a diagram indicating the basic Cannabinoid synthesis flow.